It is finally October, and the Ottawa Senators are looking to bounce back from a tough loss to one divisional rival, with a game against another one.
- Last night’s game was a highly anticipated one, as the Sens went to Belleville to play the Toronto Maple Leafs. Neither team was dressing a full NHL lineup, but the Sens did have their first powerplay unit and #1 goaltender, and the Leafs were resting all their stars, so a win should have been expected.
- Unfortunately, the game got off to a terrible start, with the Toronto Marlies scoring three goals in quick succession and taking an early lead with an impressive lead in the shot clock as well. Our old friend Victor Mete even got one of the goals. I have to say, it felt so familiar hearing “Mete” and then “Leafs goal” that I momentarily forgot which team he was on.
- After a timeout, Ottawa managed not to let in any more goals for a while, and even recovered a bit of dignity at the very end of the period, with Parker Kelly burying a goal.
- The first powerplay unit finally pulled through in the second, putting the Sens within one.
- Unfortunately, Toronto scored three more goals in the third period, including an empty netter, and a late goal from Angus Crookshank wasn’t enough to salvage the game. The Sens fell by a final score of 6-3.
- It was a lousy effort all around, including from young defensemen Guénette and Bernard-Docker, who had been having a great preseason. Everyone was kind of bad, though, so I think this is a “burn the tapes” kind of situation. It’s preseason.
- Tonight, a completely different group of players takes the ice against the Montreal Canadiens. D.J. Smith has split the group according to the powerplay units, so we’ll see Sanderson as the #1 defenseman, and Giroux and DeBrincat on Brassard’s wings.
- We’ll also see more of the Motte-Pinto-Joseph line that’s been so good in preseason, and the fight for a spot on the third pairing will continue with Brännström and Thomson both in the lineup.
- Ridly Greig also makes his return, after missing some time due to injury. With the top 9 pretty much decided, the battle for a fourth line spot should be fascinating.
- Puck drop will be at 7pm. You can watch live on TSN5 or listen along on TSN1200.